SENIOR figures from Peterborough’s business community sounded upbeat when speaking to the Evening Telegraph in January. Business editor John Kralevich spoke to local experts in a new year round-up. Here’s what they said:
“The city will continue to have a large predominance of environment-related businesses and there will be a large demand for green services. The logistics and distribution industry will prevail,with a very significant number of goods being transported. Exporters should find opportunities to prosper in the wake of a weak sterling. Liquidity is the problem – financial institutions need to get their act together to help small businesses to survive.” John Bridge, chief executive, Peterborough Chamber of Commerce.
“Getting credit flowing in the economy is vital. Government can do more to kick-start the economy but it has to be a balanced package – to help businesses, and business confidence, as well as consumers. Measures in the pre-budget report, such as the cut in VAT, will take some time to impact on the economy. Relief on empty properties is seen as a positive step both for small and larger companies.” Richard Tunnicliffe, director of the Confederation of British Industry, East of England.
“I want banks to start lending in order to restore confidence in the economy.” Rachel Parkin, owner of Reba gift store.
“Regulations regarding the borrowing of money have to be sorted out. That is, the root of the problem, not the result of the problem. For example, there is plenty of cheap finance, which is often deferred, when buying cars and furniture. But there have to be proper guidelines in place.” Paul Norton, head of residential division of property consultancy Carter Jonas.
“I hope Barack Obama gets off to a good start, generates a feelgood factor in the States which then finds its way over here.” Stuart Manning, principal at chartered accountants and business advisers MacIntyre Hudson.